Following are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the TIF procedure using the EsophyX device.
Safety & Effectiveness
- Regularly experience troublesome symptoms of GERD
- No longer respond adequately to, or are dissatisfied with, pharmaceutical therapies
- Are concerned about the adverse long-term potential side-effects of taking PPIs
- Are considering surgical intervention but are concerned about the potential side effects (e.g. gas, bloating, difficulty swallowing, inability to vomit) and complication rates for laparoscopic antireflux surgery
Trained and certified TIF physicians are best able to assess your clinical situation relative to established patient selection criteria; they can be found in the TIF Physician Locator by searching zip code or states.
We are aware that within the practice of medicine, surgeons have laparoscopically repaired hiatal hernias larger than 2cm in a separate and/or concomitant procedure followed by a TIF procedure.
For further reference, here’s a link to a recent study published September 2015 that measured hiatal hernias before a TIF procedure: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26460056 . Your physician may also have a subscription to the American Journal of Surgery to review the data.
During The Procedure
- No visible scars
- No risk for skin infection (as there are no skin incisions)
- Fewer complications during and after surgery
- Reduced patient discomfort
- Shortened patient recovery
- Shorter hospital stay
- Few of the typical long-term side effects from traditional surgical approaches
After The Procedure
A patient may typically go home either the same day or the following day, depending upon his/her specific situation and the recommendations of his/her healthcare provider. Most patients return to work and resume participating in normal activities within a few days. Patients should expect to experience some discomfort in their stomach, chest, nose, and throat for three to seven days after the TIF procedure. Patients will also be asked to restrict physical activity for the first weeks and are given dietary guidelines to help maximize success while tissue heals. Specific instructions will vary by patient and are at the physician’s discretion. For best results, strict adherence to physician instructions is highly recommended.
In contrast, a traditional fundoplication such as the laparoscopic Nissen procedure creates a full 360-degree wrap around the esophagus that results in a “supra-physiologic” (literally translated: “more than is natural”) antireflux valve. Because the wrap is tighter than in normal anatomy, functions such as normal amounts of reflux, belching, and vomiting may be limited.
A simple way to describe how the fasteners are applied is to imagine how a plastic price tag attaches to a piece of clothing. The fasteners are like that, but a much smaller version. The fastener rides along a very small needle that glides through two layers of stomach tissue. The fastener opens forming an “H” shape on either side of the two layers. The bridge in the middle holds the tissue together while the body knits the two layers together.